Yellowstone renames mountain for ‘offensive’ old name

A US national park will rename one of its mountains after its previous namesake took part in a massacre that killed 173 Native Americans.

The National Park Service announced last week that Mount Doane in Yellowstone National Park will be renamed First Peoples Mountain.

The agency said Thursday the change was made to remove an “offensive name” from America’s first national park.

The U.S. Board on Geographic Names voted unanimously, 15-0, upholding the decision, Fox news reports.

Wyoming Mountain stands 10,551 feet (3,215 meters) east of Yellowstone Lake.

Stream the news you want, whenever you want with Flash. 25+ news channels in 1 place. New to Flash? Try 1 month free. Offer ends on October 31, 2022 >

The mountain was previously named after explorer Gustavus Doane.

Born in Illinois in 1840, Doane grew up in California and attended the University of the Pacific at Santa Clara before enlisting with the “California Hundred,” a federal volunteer unit absorbed by the Second Massachusetts Volunteer Cavalry.

After reaching the rank of sergeant in 1864, he resigned to accept a commission as a lieutenant with the first regiment, Mississippi Marine Brigade, according to Montana State University.

After the Civil War, Doane was named mayor of Yazoo City Mississippi in 1867.

A year later, he applied to a commission in the Army and was appointed a second lieutenant in the Second United States Cavalry.

For the next 24 years, Doane served with the regiment, reaching the rank of captain in 1884.

He was stationed at border checkpoints in Montana, California, and Arizona during his post-war career.

He participated in the Sioux War of 1876, the Nez Pearce War of 1877, and the Apache Campaign of 1886.

Doane also led the first official exploration of present-day Yellowstone National Park, the Langford-Washburn Expedition of 1870.

Towards the end of his life, Doane unsuccessfully tried to gain oversight of Yellowstone National Park and influence the military’s widespread adoption of his invention, the Doane Centennial Tent.

He died on May 5, 1892.

The National Park Service said Doane led an attack on a group of Piegan Blackfeet in 1870 in response to the alleged murder of a white fur trader.

“During what is now known as the Marias Massacre, at least 173 American Indians were killed, including many women, elderly tribesmen and children who suffered from smallpox. Doane wrote fondly about this attack and bragged about it for the rest of his life,” the agency wrote.

The name was forwarded to the Board on Geographic Names in June 2022, based on recommendations from the Rocky Mountain Tribal Council.

Yellowstone National Park has contacted all 27 associated tribes in recent months and has not received any objections or concerns about the change.

The name change will be reflected in The Domestic Names Geographic Names Information System (GNIS) in the coming days.

The park said it might consider additional changes to other “derogatory or inappropriate names” in the future.

This article originally appeared in Fox News and is reproduced with permission.

Originally published as Yellowstone renames mountain for ‘offensive’ old name